Other than Charlotte, that intelligent, graceful spider that spun a web to save Wilbur the pig in “Charlotte’s Web,” spiders are something that most of us don’t want to have in our home. Even if we understand that most of them don’t want to harm us and that they can even kill other bugs that can wreak some serious havoc in our home, we don’t want them there. That’s especially true of people who live in an area with dangerous spiders like the brown recluse or black widow.
But how to get rid of them? Powerful chemicals designed to eradicate them, bring harm to humans and the environment too. Fortunately, there are a number of natural remedies that can be employed for maximum spider fighting effects.
1. An All-Natural Spider Repellent Spray
It’s easy to make your own all-natural spider repellent that doesn’t contain any chemicals whatsoever. All you have to do is mix water with a couple of essential oils and apple cider vinegar in a spray bottle together and then apply it to any spots that you tend to find spiders, or where there are already. You can use the spray inside, but keep in mind that the oils can stain carpets, upholstery, bedding and other items, so proceed with caution.
Here’s how to make it.
- 1-quart water
- 3 drops peppermint essential oil
- 3 drops lavender essential oil
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
Add the water to a spray bottle, followed by the oils (the best place to get the oils is Plant Therapy Essential Oils) and apple cider vinegar. Shake well to blend and then spray away, spraying inside cracks, around windows and doors, light fixtures and other places spiders tend to gather. Re-apply once a week during peak seasons.
2. Orange Peels
Spiders tend to have an adversity to citrus scents, which is why using orange peels can be a safe and effective way to keep spiders at bay. You can actually use the peels of any citrus fruit, like lemons or grapefruit, but oranges are probably the easiest.
Cut the peel off your orange (or other citrus fruit) and then cut the peel into quarter-inch chunks. Place the chunks into a pot or another container that can handle boiling water, and then pour one cup of boiling water over half of the chunks, leaving them in to soak overnight. In the morning, strain the chunks and then add a quarter-cup of witch hazel to the water. Add the mixture to a spray bottle and shake well. Smash up your remaining chunks of orange peel using a pestle to release the citrus scent and then sprinkle those in places like cabinets, under the sink and other areas where spiders frequently enter or are seen.
3. Peppermint Essential Oil
There’s a reason the repellent spray we listed first contains peppermint essential oil. Spiders hate that minty aroma, even though most of us humans enjoy it. It acts as a natural insecticide that repels spiders, and many other insects too, like mosquitoes. Researchers, according to a study published in the Malaria Journal revealed why – it offers repellent action and is so potent that it even killed mosquito larvae 24 hours after exposure to a solution of peppermint oil and water.
You can use peppermint essential oil on its own by dabbing some onto cotton balls, and then placing the peppermint-scented cotton balls strategically around your house, as noted before, such as cabinets, under the sink, cracks and crevices, and so on. Replace the cotton balls with fresh ones once a week. Be sure to only use 100% pure peppermint essential oil, such as this bottle of Plant Therapy Peppermint Oil.
4. White Vinegar
White vinegar has probably 1,000 uses or more, including repelling spiders due to its acetic acid content. By using a diluted solution, combining white water with vinegar, you can keep those little creatures away. Just add equal parts of vinegar and water in a spray bottle, shake well to combine and then spray it directly on spiders, cobwebs and any place you usually find them, like those cabinets, closets, sinks and corners. Be sure to get those cracks and crevices in the floor and walls and repeat once a week to keep them away.
5. Get a Cat
While you probably don’t want to get a cat just to get rid of spiders, if you’ve been thinking about it and have a spider problem, it might be time to go for it. Cats are especially good at naturally keeping a spider population down.
Turmeric is a fantastic spice with a wealth of health benefits, and it also happens to be one of the best spices for keeping spiders away. To use it, combine two tablespoons of turmeric powder with water, making a fine paste. Then, apply the paste to cotton balls and place them in areas of your home that are prone to spiders, as mentioned before. But beware, whatever you do never apply the paste directly to furniture, walls, floors, etc., as this stuff can stain like crazy, and turmeric stains are extremely difficult to remove.
An old but effective wives’ tale handed down through generations, is to slice up some onions, toss them in a bowl of water, and then place the bowl where spiders are entering your home to keep them out.
8. Eucalyptus Plants
Eucalyptus has a distinct, menthol-like fragrance that spiders despise, and it happens to make a stunning indoor plant. The only downside is that when growing it indoors, it must have full sun, so you’ll need to have an appropriate place in your home to keep, it, and pay close attention to basic feeding, lighting, and watering needs. If you can, keep more than one around to keep spiders out, and leave your house smelling fresh and clean.
9. Horse Chestnuts (Conkers)
Horse chestnuts are another old wives tale for repelling spiders but with much anecdotal evidence of their efficacy. Place them anywhere spiders tend to enter, including along baseboards and window sills.
Turmeric isn’t the only spice you can use. Cinnamon is also great for keeping the spiders out. All you have to do is sprinkle it around your home – and, it smells amazing! Experts say that if you sprinkle it in a line around the spider’s point of entry, they won’t cross it.
The smell of cedar is another thing that spiders apparently don’t care for. If you want to prevent spiders from getting into your house in the first place, try adding some cedar mulch around the perimeter of your home, and you’ll stop them from coming in where they aren’t welcome. Just be sure to use a high quality cedar, such as this one, and maintain it properly so that it stays effective.
12. Clean Your Home Regularly
Cleanliness is a significant factor in keeping the bugs out, including spiders. That means doing things like vacuuming, dusting and sweeping regularly as well as washing all surfaces with hot soapy water often to keep insects from making themselves at home in your home. Pay special attention to areas where there are food and crumbs. Take your trash out frequently too, don’t let it pile up – bring it outside, and make sure those bins are tightly sealed.